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Need help removing Odor!

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Stet123:
Not sure if this is the right place to be posting this but figured somebody on here may be able to help. I have a plastic Yeti cooler that has a really bad, lasting smell from dead fish and bait that got left in there for too long. The smell is extremely hard to remove, I’ve tried ozone generator, bleach, baking soda, vinegar, etc. These seemed to help a little bit but the smell always comes back. Is anybody able to tell me what’s going on here from a chemistry standpoint and is there any hope for salvaging this or should I just pitch and get a new one? (I’d really like to try any route possible to save it as it’s a customized cooler and very expensive)

Thanks!

Corribus:
The interior of the Yeti is plastic, which is porous. Odor molecules (in this case probably long chain amines) essentially get trapped within the polymer lining, and reach an equilibrium with the interior headspace when it is closed, so when you open it, you get a nice whiff. Odor threshold for these is pretty low, so it doesn't take much to stink. And surface cleaning won't really help, because the molecules that give the bad smell are literally absorbed on the interior of the polymer. The only way to really get rid of it is to literally air it out. You'll just want to open it as wide as possible and let it sit in a warm, well-ventilated spot. It may take a while, but eventually it should lose its smell.

Stet123:
Gotcha! That makes sense. How long do you think it would take to air it out? Would it help if I put it in the sun or does it just need lots of time open? Or is there anything else I can do to help expedite it? Thanks a lot!

rolnor:
 A hair-dryer?

Stet123:

--- Quote from: rolnor on May 24, 2021, 07:14:32 AM --- A hair-dryer?

--- End quote ---

Why would a hairdryer help? Cause of heat?

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